Brazilian surfer Caio Ibelli became the latest casualty on the injury-plagued WSL Championship Tour with an awkward landing in a free surf earlier in the week dashing his chances of competing in this year’s Margaret River Pro.
Ibelli posted a photo of the incident to social media, saying a broken foot had led to his stepping down from the Pro.
"Unfortunately I had to withdraw from the Margaret River Pro due to a broken foot on this wave training at the main break,” he wrote.
“God knows everything and I'm going to do everything I can to come back stronger. Thank you for the support!"
The withdrawal has opened up a rare chance for two Western Australian surfers to battle for the available spot in the competition.
Margaret River’s Jack Robinson and Jerome Forrest, who placed equal-third in the Drug Aware WA Trials on Tuesday, will compete in a 25-minute surf-off, which will take place before Round One heats begin.
The winner of Friday’s surf-off will join fellow Western Australians Bronte Macaulay, Mikaela Green, Dave Delroy-Carr and Kael Walsh in the Margaret River Pro.